SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- The Marina Green -- 74 acres that so many people love and cherish.
"That openness is a treasure that we have today," said Dan Clarke, a concerned neighbor.
But that could change with a new project called "The Marina Improvement and Remediation Project."
It could mean expanding the harbor footprint along Marina Green.
According to project supporters, this is what the Marina looks like today.
And what it could look like if the project proposal got the green light.
Here's the issue: right beside the Marina Green is Gashouse Cove, an area that requires serious cleanup.
Laura Thompson is with "Keep the Waterfront Open."
"PG&E is providing $190 million to close up that gas toxins that are coming up through the Gashouse Cove which is over by Fort Mason. That is the intent of the settlement to clean up that gas plant and toxins up," said Thompson.
Many community members are upset.
They say the SF Recreation and Park Department isn't doing the cleanup and instead are pushing forward a controversial plan.
"Instead RPD, to use that money to clean up a minimal amount of the toxins and instead build a brand new big boat harbor in front of the last remaining waterfront area in front of the Marina Green," said Thompson.
Frustrated community members protested today at SF City Hall right before the Recreation and Park Commission meeting, saying they want to maintain the Marina Green and its open waterfront.
"It's a beautiful unique spot within San Francisco. People from all over the community use this place. To put a boat parking lot in front of Marina Green--it serves so few people when so many can get the advantages of this spot," said Erin Roach with "Keep The Waterfront Open."
Outside City Hall, demonstrators carried signs that said, "No new boat harbor" and "Marina Green for the people."
Inside meeting chambers, Recreation and Park Commissioners heard the proposal and nearly five dozen public comments.
The majority of the neighbors say "no-way" and that the plan is a "no-go"
Some even gave a thumbs down sign during the project presentation.
"People don't want a harbor in front of the Marina Green," said one speaker during public comment.
"It is outrageous that I have to be here to plead that you not build a new harbor in front of the Marina Green," said another speaker.
As part of the proposed plan, more than 200 boats would be relocated and moored along Marina Green.
Neighbors say that would block bay views.
Proponents of the plan say the plan would make the waterfront at Gashouse Cove more accessible.
"We are for going ahead with the EIR. It will give lots of people a lot of opportunity to get on the water in the future," said one speaker during public comment.
In the end, the Recreation and Park Commission unanimously voted to move forward with an environmental review study.
According to the Department of Recreation and Parks, commissioners added an amendment that the work include a financial feasibility study of the Marina with the objective of minimizing the number of slips in the West Harbor and identifying opportunities to add additional slips in the East Harbor.
The Department released this statement late Thursday afternoon:
The Marina Improvement and Remediation Project is an opportunity to clean up environmental pollution at the SF Marina while increasing public access and expanding recreation both in water and on land. This joint project with the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department and PG&E is governed by a 2021 settlement agreement approved by the Board of Supervisors.
Today's action by the Recreation and Park Commission authorizes us to proceed with planning and design for environmental review under CEQA. This work will include a financial feasibility study of the Marina with the objective of minimizing the number of slips in the West Harbor and identifying opportunities to add additional slips in the East Harbor. The environmental review process is expected to take 18-24 months and includes an Environmental Impact Report, which will be prepared by the Planning Department. Once the review is complete, we will bring a proposed project back to the Commission for approval with the adoption of CEQA findings; the project will consider both community feedback and the purpose of the settlement to ensure an environmentally and financially sustainable marina.
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